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Rare incentive boosts CD rates

By Sheyna Steiner · Bankrate.com
Wednesday, June 8, 2011
Posted: 12 pm ET

In better days, incentives from banks or credit unions would have included generous rates on CDs or savings accounts, but these days generous is a relative term; the truly decent offers are few and far between.

One incentive that could, indirectly, boost the payoff from buying a CD targets big-box store members.

A recent press release from Discover Bank and BJ's Wholesale Club announced a nice perk for BJ's members who buy a CD from Discover Bank.

The promotion offers BJ's Inner Circle members a $25 gift card and Rewards members get a $75 gift card for opening a qualifying savings account, money market account or CD.

According to the Bankrate CD rate tables, the annual percentage yield on their one-year CD is 1.2 percent as of June 8. The CD requires a minimum deposit of $2,500.

Based on the APY, a depositor could expect to pocket about $30 after one year. Throw in the gift card and that one-year CD seems like a much better deal.

Of course, running out to buy a BJ's membership won't pay off in the long run, an inner circle-level membership will set you back $50 plus tax.

For those who already happen to have a membership, it looks like a good deal.

Though it seems more common for local banks to offer relatively high initial CD rates to new, local customers, I cannot remember the last time I saw a national promotional offer for opening a certificate of deposit that was anywhere north of mediocre.

Have you found any promotions or incentives in your area?

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